31 August 2007

What Sweeties?

A week to go now to the hols and a lot do. The Landy's got to be scrubbed and polished ready for the 'off' next Friday and I'll need to get all the camping kit out of the loft at the weekend and give it a check over, grass will have to be cut I suppose before we go which is always a bit of a chore but doesn't take too long.

The refurb on the T5 is coming along nicely, still lots to do, but the main castings have started to clean up quite well so I'm hopeful that it will turn out to look very presentable. The person who has bought it has specified some English Walnut knobs and tote so I'm happy to do that.

I've just had an email from the Competition Moderator who has let me know that Philly is going to donate a prize instead of the original donor which is very generous, so many thanks indeed Phill.......any saw from that tool chest will do at a pinch, says me, backing out the door!

The article on the Teak Casket for F&C was finished yesterday. I've run off a draft copy and I'll need to now let my proof reader (Megs, my daughter) have a look at it for spelling errors and grammatical goofs, of which there will be many, no doubt. One thing I do have to do though is a decent A2 working drawing, so I need to get cracking on that if I'm to get it in the post next week.

I can hear you chundering now, what's all this about sweets? Driving sweeties for SWIMBO to be precise, probably one of the most important decisions on the forthcoming adventure. I personally favour the 'Curiously Strong Mints' from M&S, the ones in the little green tin, but I suppose Alyson will have her usual favourites for an outing like this........a big bag of Worthers sucky sweeties!

22 August 2007

Slightly Concerned..........

The holiday is fast approaching now, just a couple of weeks to go. I voiced concern to SWIMBO a few days ago that our old tent (Vango Delta) was great for somewhere that had guaranteed sunshine but it had nowhere to shelter in the wet as it was only a little dome tent, so we went out and bought a much bigger tunnel tent from Blacks, which is where Alyson has a Saturday job incidently, so we were able to buy one at less than half-price, which is not too shabby! We look at the weather in Switzerland on these webcams each day at this site and its quite easy to see that the conditions change fairly rapidly in the mountains: http://www.myswitzerland.com/en/swisscams/cam_overview.cfm

I'm going to start another plane refurb today as well. I've got an old Record T5 jack plane which I'm going to give 'The Treatment'. I'll probably finish it to a decent standard with a Clifton blade from Axminster and make a new tote and knobs in mahogany or cherry (or whatevever I've got loafing about in the workshop which is suitable) and then flog it on the Bay. If sufficient is raised I hope to be able to put it towards the cost of a new LV 22" low angle try plane as I don't have a longer plane at the moment. Also in the pipeline for later will be a 28" woodie with a greenheart sole, double iron set at 50deg and adjustable mouth which should be very interesting to make.

I was hoping by now to have recieved my prize in the Competition, the design section having closed at the end of July. Nothing has yet appeared in the post and I have heard nothing from the person donating the prize, which is worrying and a situation that I find unacceptable. There is another person who also is owed a prize and who has not yet (I assume) recieved anything. I'm going to leave it another couple of weeks and then I may go public before I go on holiday........

14 August 2007

Heavy Weight on my Back

Dad's funeral went off quite well last week really. A sad day as these things always are but really good to meet up with my brothers again after quite a while.

With the completion of the Teak Casket a few days ago, my daughter has taken quite a shine to it, in fact most things I make would end up in her bedroom stuffed full of clutter if she could get away with it, so to ease the burden on my aching shoulders I'm going to make her one and hopefully that will be the end of it....don't hold your breath though. SWIMBO's been giving me a bit of grief as well over it so it's a two pronged attack........ I'm not ever going to win, but then again do us blokes ever? A few weeks ago a visited a pal in Basingstoke who let me have (amongst some other timber) a few short boards of spalted sycamore, just enough to do a little box with a solid panel for a lid and hopefully enough left over to veneer some ply for the base, so I'm hoping it should turn out quite well.......trouble is I need some thin bandsaw blades to convert the wood and haven't been able to buy any yet as all available spondulicks is being chanelled towards our hols, I live in hope though!

We're counting down the days now for our trip abroad and have now decided that it will be Switzerland as we've bought a half-price rail card valid for all trains, buses and lake steamers as well as the motorway pass for the windscreen of the Landy. The bikes are also being taken this year so that adds an extra element to the proceedings. I've got a very busy itinerary planned though I'm not sure we'll be able to do all of it so we need to be flexible and make sure we can do as much as possible depending on the weather, which can always be variable in the mountains. Looking forward to it. Driving a Landrover down the Swiss mountain hairpins last year was something that needed a little bit of concentration......should be a great holiday.

03 August 2007

It's Finished

I've finally finished the casket for the Competition. It's been very interesting to make but proved quite a challenge in many respects, not least 'cos of the curved surfaces and of course the secret mitre dovetails. I was speaking to the editor of F&C yesterday and he's very keen for an article with emphasis on the construction as it hasn't been covered in the mag for a number of years, so I'd better get busy on the keyboard....they don't call me 'fingers' (preceeded by a suitable adjective) at work for nothing! I thought I would put up a couple of sneaky pics of the finished project in the Blog.
On a more mundane note, we've got Dad's funeral in Guidford next Thursday which will be a bit of a trial for all concerned. I for one will be glad when it's over and I can get back to some semblance of normality